Wednesday, April 25, 2012

V is for Visayan

Somewhere in between beginning to bleed out of my eyeballs while hammering out my 5th hour of Visayan language study for the day, I start to realize--this is hard.

What do we do here? We study.
Sometimes, it's hard to say a lot about our ministry that isn't kind of boring right now, because, well, sometimes language study isn't super exciting.

A normal day of study includes working with my langauge helper, listening to recordings, and doing filing, reading, and other practice. Whenever I go out, I'm trying to use as much Visayan as possible, and I also tend to listen to other people's conversations...trying to understand something.
We try to do a lot of CE's (Culture Events) that get us out and experiencing life here, and speaking language in real situations. This is great for language learning, but it is also EXHAUSTING. Trying to talk and listen and learn in a second language for extended periods kind of takes it out of you.

We're also updating old grammar lessons, and working on developing a new language helping program for new students. (In our spare time.)

Oh, and we also run a small daycare in our house. It's called "Our Children."

Don't get me wrong. I love what we do. Studying a language is REALLY enjoyable to me.

Beginning to understand what is being talked about in our little Church is an awesome feeling, and being able to connect at a deeper level with people here is awesome.

We feel the pressure to learn as FAST as possible, because we want new missionaries to be able to come here ASAP and start learning Visayan, because that is their first step to Tribal Church Planting, and seeing new tribal believers.
But a lot of langauge learning is just plain hard work.

Next time you see Dora the Explorer effortlessly transitioning back and forth between Spanish and English, you can pray for us.

We PRAY for the day when we can share God's Word in this language, speak it well with our own children, and help new missionaries tackle the massive behemoth of culture, grammar, wisdom and words that is...

VISAYAN.

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